Shah Faesal, the 2010 Indian Administrative Service (IAS) topper, resigned on Wednesday from the elite service after having remained in the news for his controversial tweets for which the government had initiated an inquiry against him.
The officer, who was assigned his home cadre of Jammu-Kashmir, announced in a tweet that his resignation was to protest against the “unabated killings” in Kashmir.
There were reports that he would join the National Conference (NC) and contest the coming Lok Sabha elections from the valley. He would make a formal announcement on Friday in a media interaction.
Faesal had recently returned after a stint as a Fulbright fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School and put in his papers for voluntary retirement from IAS to join politics.
“To protest the unabated killings in Kashmir and absence of any credible political initiative from Union Government, I have decided to resign from IAS. Kashmiri lives matter. I will be addressing a press-conference on Friday,” he tweeted in the afternoon.
To protest the unabated killings in Kashmir and absence of any credible political initiative from Union Government, I have decided to resign from IAS.
Kashmiri lives matter.
I will be addressing a press-conference on Friday.
Attached is my detailed statement. pic.twitter.com/Dp41rFIzIg
— Shah Faesal (@shahfaesal) January 9, 2019
Giving the reasons that have provoked him to quit the IAS, Faesal said, “The marginalisation and invisibilisation of around 200 million Indian Muslims at the hands of Hindutva forces reducing them to second-class citizens.”
He further said that his resignation was also due to “insidious attacks on the special identity of the J-K state and growing culture of intolerance and hate in the mainland India in the name of hypernationalism”.
Attacking the Modi government, Faesal said, “I wish to remind the regime of the day that subversion of public institutions like RBI, CBI and NIA has the potential to decimate the Constitutional edifice of this country and it needs to be stopped. I wish to reiterate that voices of reason in this country cannot be muzzled for long and the environment of siege will need to end if we wish to usher in true democracy.”
Reacting to Faesal’s decision, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeted, “The bureaucracy’s loss is politics’ gain. Welcome to the fold @shahfaesal”.
It is worth mentioning that in July last year the government had initiated departmental inquiry against Faesal for allegedly defying the service conduct rules by sarcastically tweeting against the rising incidents of rape in the country.
Faesal did not relent and posted on his Twitter account the letter of the state’s General Administration Department (GAD) wherein departmental inquiry was initiated against him.
He described it as a “Love letter from my boss for my sarcastic tweet against rape-culture in South Asia. The irony here is that service rules with a colonial spirit are invoked in a democratic India to stifle the freedom of conscience”.